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Black Belt Crusaders Basketball Camp teaches skills for on, off court

Players who attended the Black Belt Crusaders Basketball Camp show off the trophies and certificates they earned for completing the camp. The camp finished up on Thursday at Ellwood Christian Academy after a month of teaching young players fundamentals of the game and lessons on life. -- Robert Hudson

A local basketball camp recently came to a close, as its players left with skills for becoming better on and off the court.

The Black Belt Crusaders Basketball Camp wrapped up on Thursday at Ellwood Christian Academy.

Coach Nate Brown, director of the camp, said things went well overall, and the young players learned how to be better players on the court and better people off it.

“Today is our last day and we had a successful camp — we had over 30 kids come out,” Brown said. “We gave them trophies and certificates today, and over the course of the camp for the month the kids learned basic fundamentals, ran scrimmage games, and they learned how to play on the court and do things off the court as far as being respectful to each other and other people, too.”

While the camp also focused on the players just having fun, Brown made sure to tell them that the only way they’ll continue to improve is to keep practicing and working hard at what they do, whether it’s in basketball or in life with their other interests.

“Also, I taught them things about how to make money, and how to use their other talents besides basketball to do things,” Brown said.

Brown said he will continue the camp next year, and camps like these are important because it’s crucial that the community gets involved with children in order to help them focus on the positive aspects of life.

“It’s very important because nowadays kids are getting into gangs, starting to use drugs, violence, and that’s not necessary in our community,” Brown said. “They need to learn to live and have fun, and be a person, be nice to people, and learn how to make an honest living. Don’t be crooked, it’s too much crookedness going on in our neighborhood. A lot of older people need to start dealing with our kids more and not just turning a blind eye to them when they see them doing stuff. That’s one purpose of the camp — to start helping kids do better things.”